This month at Range of Motion Physical Therapy Dublin, I attended a workshop/sales conference on a new custom made off the shelf orthotic. How could there be an off the shelf custom made orthotic, I hear you say…. well I asked myself the same question when I got the invite to attend, so I decided to see for myself.

There are generally two schools of thought when it comes to orthotics, one camp says you should be able to strengthen the weak arches in the foot to prevent a foot pronating. Then there is the camp who recommend the use of a custom made orthotic to support the foot and problem solved…at costs of normally around €200 – €250. In addition there are people with genetically flat feet that have been passed down from their parents and no amount of exercise will help correct that.

To be honest I think I sit in both camps, as in, when I see client with a arch issue that maybe contributing to their hip or knee pain I will often recommend they purchase an off the shelf pair of othotics, normally in the region of €35. I will ask them to wear them while we work on strengthening the intrinsic muscles in the foot. Admittedly the off the shelf orthotics you get in your local chemist can be of poor quality in terms of durability and support, they will do a job on a short term basis.

However, having attend the Quadrastep conference I was very impressed with their product and how it would be perfect for elderly clients and those who do not respond to arch strengthening exercises.

The Quardrastep System was designed by Roberta Nole a Poditratis and Physical Therapist with 20 years experience. Through her research she designed 6 custom made orthotics based on what she feels are 6 generic foot types, they also come in a narrow or wide versions and variety of sizes.

With this product there is no need for casting, foot impressions, foot scans, instead I can asses your foot type by specific foot landmarks, asses your walking gait and the wear patterns on your foot (hard skin). Based on this I will choose the correct orthotic from the choice of 12 and supply you with them immediately!

One of the best things about this product is the cost, they are a fraction of the cost of the custom orthotic and offer the same support and durability as a custom made made orthotic.

Please contact me should you wish to learn more or make an appointment for an assessment.